Off-road protection is always a tradeoff. We have to decide how much bulk, weight, and sometimes rigidity we want to add to our machines to get the protection we are looking for. When it comes to front disc protection there really aren’t that many options, but System Tech Racing took a novel approach that has some outside-of-the-box thinking.
The STR guard replaces the left-side wheel spacer as its anchor point to the bike. The carbon-fiber semi-circle guard protrudes from between the fork leg and the front brake rotor and is “open” at the end, meaning it doesn’t wrap inward to cover the front of the disc. The guard is larger than the rotor, so it would be very unlikely for something to make contact with the rotor before the guard. This also makes it less likely for mud, rocks, or sticks to get lodged between the guard and the rotor. The leading edge of the guard has a plastic cap that takes the brunt of impacts.
Installation is as easy as putting on your front wheel. You just replace the left wheel spacer with the guard and that’s it. The aluminum wheel spacer looks great and is burly, as is the whole guard. The main carbon-fiber section is about 3mm thick with stainless hardware so the plastic end pieces or the main carbon piece can be replaced.
After a couple months of use there are a few minor dings in the plastic caps and some of the bolts are a little scratched up, but I’m glad this was there rather than have that damage to my disc. I think the peace of mind that this guard gives you over flimsy stock guards that can still flex and bend your rotor is well worth the price. Plus, I had multiple people stop and ask me about it, saying how cool it looked. Protection and looks—nice!